Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
131

Anton Schwartz: When Music Calls

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count Views
Anton Schwartz: When Music Calls Anton Schwartz, who could have pursued a career in any number of relatively lucrative fields (he earned a B.A. in math and philosophy summa cum laude from Harvard, a masters degree from Stanford), chose music instead — more specifically, Jazz, which as many people know doesn't always pay the bills. Of course, that's not what it's about. If there's music in one's soul, and he or she has the talent to pursue it, there's really no other choice. So Anton Schwartz, Jazz saxophonist, who gigged around San Francisco for the past three years, has co-produced (with Bud Spangler) his debut album, the appropriately titled When Music Calls, on which he shows that music might not have been such an unsound preference after all. While it's nice to have those other options to fall back on, Schwartz definitely has a promising future in Jazz. Stylistically, he calls to mind another marvelous young player, Eric Alexander (and anyone who has read my reviews of Alexander's work knows how highly I regard him). Schwartz and Alexander are unvarnished smokers in the Dexter Gordon/Hank Mobley/George Coleman mold, although the more experienced Alexander's technique is at this point a touch the sharper of the two. Given time, Schwartz should recover that ground. In all other respects, he's already sound as a (1950s) dollar. Lovely, full-bodied tone, unerring sense of time, abundant storehouse of engaging albeit conventional ideas — and above all, an innate propensity to swing in any mood or tempo. Schwartz wrote eight of the ten numbers on When Music Calls (the exeptions are Rodgers and Hart's "Where or When" and "Paradoxy," his take on Sonny Rollins' "Doxy") and arranged all of them. If none seems destined for Jazz immortality, they are never less than adequate (and at least one, the charming bossa "Dénouement," ascends well above the commonplace). The rhythm section, confined mainly to a supporting role (except for several respectable solos by Nagel and one each by Lewis and Shifflett), goes about its business with clear-headed competence. As Dan Ouellette declares in his liner notes, When Music Calls represents "the first chapter of what promises to be a vital career" in Jazz. No argument here.


Track Listing: Too Much Pepper; Rabbit Days; Where or When; Tidepool; Through the Years; Poketown; D

Personnel: Anton Schwartz, tenor sax; Paul Nagel, piano; John Shifflett, bass; Jason Lewis, drums; Josh Jones, congas (3, 4, 8).

| Record Label: AntonJazz | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Flash Mob
Flash Mob
AntonJazz
2014
buy
Radiant Blue
Radiant Blue
AntonJazz
2006
buy
Holiday Time
Holiday Time
Antonjazz
2004
buy
The Slow Lane
The Slow Lane
AntonJazz
2000
buy
When Music Calls
When Music Calls
AntonJazz
1998
buy
Frank Sinatra Frank Sinatra
vocalist
Freddie Hubbard Freddie Hubbard
trumpet
Claudio Roditi Claudio Roditi
trumpet
Hal Galper Hal Galper
piano
Bennie Maupin Bennie Maupin
clarinet
Earl Klugh Earl Klugh
guitar, acoustic
Donny McCaslin Donny McCaslin
saxophone
Stanley Turrentine Stanley Turrentine
sax, tenor

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.